Safeguarding

Keeping Children Safe

At Our Lady & St Thomas RC Primary School we are committed to Safeguarding
and promoting the well-being of all children. We expect our staff and volunteers to share this commitment.

Keeping children safe at school is of paramount importance to us. It underpins every decision we make on a day to day basis and takes many forms including the recruitment of new staff, risk assessments for trips, health care plans for children, site security, regular child protection training, e-safety lessons for children and staff with accredited first aid and medications training.
Designated safeguarding leads take responsibility for child protection, including support for staff, developing policies and training and information sharing with other agencies.

  • Mrs Frances Gowland, Lead Safeguarding Person
  • Mrs Madeleine Fulton, Designated Safeguarding Lead
  • Mrs Johanna Whitfield, Designated Safeguarding Lead
  • Mrs Carol Hauxwell, Designated Safeguarding Support

Staff & Visitors- ensuring they are vetted informed & trained.Areas of Safeguarding
Our safeguarding policies cover all areas of school life and include:

  • Children’s Behaviour- promoting safer & happier behaviours & lifestyles.
  • Parents & Carers- promoting links & supporting families.
  • Premises -keeping them safe, pleasant & fit for purpose.
  • Curriculum -providing positive, life affirming learning experiences.
  • Outside School- ensuring safer activities and environments outside school.

Safer Recruitment
We follow strict procedures to ensure that everyone who works with our children is vetted, keeping our children as safe as possible. Ongoing checks and ‘whistle-blowing’ are in line with current policy.

Staff Training

  • Staff are trained in child protection issues and they are aware of the procedures to follow.
  • Staff are encouraged to be vigilant in order to maintain the safety of our children.
  • All Staff & Volunteers are given a copy of ‘Behaviour Guidelines for Staff & Volunteers’ and are directed to the document ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education 2016’.

Child Protection with Safeguarding Policy
All staff have an up-to-date understanding of safeguarding children issues and are able to implement the safeguarding children policy and procedure appropriately. Policies are in line with current guidance and procedures.
Staff are able to respond appropriately to any:

  • significant changes in children’s behaviour;
  • deterioration in their general well-being;
  • unexplained bruising, marks or signs of possible abuse;
  • signs of neglect;
  • comments children make which give cause for concern.

All staff are aware of the need to maintain privacy and confidentiality.

Information Sharing
We have an obligation to obtain necessary information from parents in advance of a child being admitted to school, including:

  • emergency contact numbers;
  • the child’s special dietary requirements, preferences or food allergies the child may have;
  • the child’s special health requirements;
  • information about who has legal contact with the child; and who has parental responsibility for the child.

Written parental permission is requested, at the time of the child’s admission to the provision, to the seeking of any necessary emergency medical advice or treatment in the future.
PARENTS & CARERS MUST TELL US OF ANY CHANGES TO THESE DETAILS.
We take confidentiality very seriously. Any information which we hold is treated as confidential and shared on a ‘need-to-know’ basis.

Links with External Agencies
Because our first concern must be the well-being of your child, there may be occasions when we have to consult other agencies before we contact you. The procedures we have to follow have been laid down in accordance with the local authority child protection procedures.
We are fortunate to be supported by a range of external agencies which can be called upon to support the work we do in school. These include School Nurse, Health Practitioners, Educational Psychology, Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services, Behaviour Support, Social Services and Specialists in supporting Special Educational Needs & Disabilities.

Reporting Concerns or Complaints
Further to the above procedures, we have in place a concerns and complaints policy. This enables children, staff and carers to report anything they feel is of concern.
Concerns should be raised in the following order:

  1. To the Class Teacher. Then, if there is no resolution;
  2. To the Head Teacher. Then, if there is no resolution;
  3. To the Chair of Governors. Then, if there is no resolution;
  4. To the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle.

Contact details are available from the school office.

Review of Policy and Practice
In order to ensure that best practice is maintained, our policies are reviewed at least regularly to incorporate the latest statutory guidance emerge.
If you would like more information on safeguarding, please contact the school for all our policies or view our policies section on our website.